The finance ministry is looking at adopting several measures to kickstart stalled projects while addressing the problem of non-performing assets (NPAs) in the Indian banks, Jayant Sinha, minister of state for finance said on Wednesday.
“We are thinking about the ways in which the NPA situation can be resolved more speedily. There are a variety of measures that we are planning to undertake as far as stalled projects are concerned,” he told reporters after a review meeting with the chiefs of public sector banks.
According to the Economic Survey 2014-15, unfavourable market conditions and delayed investments have led to an increase in stalled projects, which stood at a staggering Rs 8.8 lakh crore, as of December-end.
Sinha also said that there were “challenges and constraints” in the banking industry which the government would be addressing.
“The government is in the process of establishing six new Debt Recovery Tribunals (DBTs) to speed-up the recovery of bad loans of the banking sector,” the ministry said.
In September 2014, the level of bad assets in the government banks stood at 5.33% of the total advances, up from 4.72% in March 2014.
Government data indicated that the top 10 borrowers accounted for Rs 28,152 crore of the NPAs.
The Reserve Bank of India has already come out with several instructions to banks to reduce NPAs, and prevent fresh slippages. Banks have put in place strong recovery mechanisms including name-and-shame policy not only for early detection of stressed assets but also to spruce recovery.
Sinha also said that representatives of different ministries along with industry and lenders would jointly try to resolve the issue of the NPA level in the power sector.
Bank boards are monitoring the top 300 NPA accounts and those that are Rs 1 crore and above.
(With IANS inputs)